UCF Lake Nona Medical Center Groundbreaking


(calm music) – [Man] Good morning. Please welcome Michael Joyce, president of HCA Healthcare’s
North Florida division. – [Michael] Morning. Y’all ready to build a hospital? – [Audience] Yeah! – There you go, there you go. So about an hour and a half
ago when it was raining, there were a lot of nervous people. Lots of nervous people. And I’m looking at the clouds and I’m looking at this stage
and I’m looking at all of you. I think you all could fit up here so if it starts raining,
y’all just come on up. (audience laughs) You know, this is a fantastic turnout. I do a lot of groundbreakings in my role and I’ve got to say this is one of the best groundbreaking ceremonies. The breakfast was very nice. But this whole event took
a lot to put together. I want to thank everybody who, the UCF, the HCA folks who had a hand
in putting this all together. On behalf of HCA and our UCF partnership, I’d like to welcome you and thank you for being here today. Today we celebrate the groundbreaking of UCF Lake Nona Medical Center, a hospital that represents
the future of medicine in our community and will
provide outstanding training for tomorrow’s physicians. Now the planning for this hospital took place many, many years ago and this day would not be possible without the vision of so many folks. But I would like to thank
the UCF Board of Trustees, the Board of Governors of
the State University System of Florida, Dr. Hitt, Dr.
Whittaker, Dr. German, and the leadership of Tavistock. It’s through your commitment, coupled with the strength of HCA, that we bring together the
power of medicine, research, and education to Lake Nona Medical City. It’s really no exaggeration to say this community-based
teaching hospital is a region defining project. Here in one of the nation’s most dynamic, innovative communities, we will propel health care forward, improve the quality of life for many, and provide education that
ignites careers in medicine. Our mission is the care and
improvement of human life through the exceptional patient care, groundbreaking research,
and outstanding education. Our vision is simple. Put patients first, provide quality care with
warmth, compassion, and dignity. As the nation’s largest
health care provider, as well as the largest provider
in the state of Florida, we are proud to partner with UCF to make this vision a reality. Through our 178 hospitals, freestanding emergency
rooms, surgery centers, and physician practices, we provide care to over 30
million patients annually across the country. In Florida alone, our 50 hospitals and affiliated
facilities provide care to over 4 million patients annually. What you may not know is HCA
is also the largest sponsor of graduate medical
education in this country, training over 3,000 residents
throughout the country in our hospitals. With over 250,000
employees, 85,000 nurses, and 40,000 physicians, the depth and breadth of
the HCA network benefits both patients and physicians. We offer clinical knowledge,
innovative strategies, scale and stability that
are transforming health care and helping communities thrive. We cannot be more excited
than to add this hospital into our network of facilities. Combining the strength of
HCA with the strength of UCF, Tavistock, and the local community, we will make Lake Nona an even healthier, better place to live. To our elected officials, our local medical
providers and physicians, community residents, and business leaders who embrace the potential
of this new hospital, we thank you for making
this moment possible and we are proud to earn your trust. As we break ground today, we do so with gratitude and
high hopes for the future. We lift our shovels in the spirit of partnership and service, envisioning the day when
we are able to take care of patients in the community. Again I’d like to thank
you on behalf of HCA and our partnership for being here today and it’s my pleasure now, although she needs no introduction, to introduce Dr. Deb German, one of the key visionaries
for this new hospital. So Deb? (audience applauds) – Thank you, Michael, for your kind words and
most importantly thank you for your partnership. In this past year, we’ve
had many discussions and made many decisions
and through it all, you have shown clarity,
vision, and integrity and we could not ask for a better partner in bringing this new academic
hospital to our community. Thank you, colleagues,
partners, friends, family, community for being here with us today. 11 years and 22 days ago
on October 3rd, 2007, we broke ground on the
UCF College of Medicine in that direction and I wore a hat. (audience laughs) I brought it. (audience applauds) On that day we talked about what this medical school would bring to an emerging Medical City at Lake Nona and our community’s economic development. A teaching hospital was
part of our dream that day. We didn’t know who our partner would be or how we would build such a hospital but we knew then what we know today, that we needed a teaching hospital to accomplish our goals to be one of the nation’s premier 21st
century medical schools, anchoring a medical city that could one day be
a global destination. This hospital next door
to the medical school and just steps away from the
UCF Lake Nona Cancer Center will provide new opportunities
for our students to learn, for our faculty to practice. It’ll bring a new level
of care to our community and another inpatient
choice for physicians. It will bring us a step closer to our shared dream for Medical City. The hospital provides
the opportunity for UCF to have a true Academic
Health Sciences Center. We could never have done this work without our partners and
supporters, so thank you all. Our future is bright and I’m honored to introduce our new UCF
president Dale Whittaker, on whose initiative and with his approval we formed the UCF Academic
Health Sciences Center. And during his interview as a
candidate for the presidency, he cited the Medical City and the UCF Academic
Health Sciences Center as a major part of his future
vision for the university. He is leading UCF into its second 50 years with a spirit of boldness and innovation. Please welcome UCF
president Dale Whittaker. (audience applauds) – Dean German, thank you for
that gracious introduction. And more importantly, I’m just looking across this grassy field with the buildings that
are amassing around us. I want to thank you for your vision, for your long-term vision for excellence in education and healthcare in
this Central Florida region. Michael Joyce, I want to also thank you. I want to thank you for your partnership, for the shared mission that we share. And Wendy Brandon. Wendy’s over here, I
was looking out there. Wendy, I also want to thank you and look forward to our partnership as the Medical Center’s new CEO. So thank you very much for that. Since I became president in July, I have thought a lot about what it means to be a 21st century university and a university that is
focused on fueling the talent, the ideas, and the innovation that will move this
community forward boldly. And the only way that we do that and is in our DNA as a university
is through partnership, working together, and
sharing a collective vision of a better Orlando. Today’s groundbreaking
embodies that future and it builds on the important work that many of you in this audience
started over a decade ago to make Orlando a destination for how health and wellness
is not only practiced but it’s also taught in this century. And because of your
leadership and your support, today is possible. I want to give some special recognition to some key architects of this vision. Tom Kuntz, past Chair of
the Board of Governors. UCF Board of Trustees
Chairman, Marcos Marchena. And other fellow UCF
Board of Trustee members. I’d like to recognize our mayors, Orlando mayor Buddy Dyer and Orange County Mayor Teresa Jacobs, neither who could be here but
certainly deserve recognition. Rasesh Thakkar, senior
manager with Tavistock group. Managing director, excuse me. And of course UCF president
emeritus John Hitt. (audience applauds) Now I’d also like to
extend special recognition to the elected officials
who are with us today. Senator Victor Torres, Representative John Cortez, Representative Carlos Guillermo Smith, Commissioner Emily Bonilla, Commissioner Victoria Siplin. Thank you. Commissioner Tony Ortiz, Commissioner Jim Gray, and Commissioner John Hearn. Thank you all for being with us. (audience applauds) Now as excited as I am
about today’s celebration, I’m really more excited about
what today means symbolically for our collective future. Just as UCF College of Medicine helped to anchor this Medical City, the UCF Lake Nona Medical
Center will be the heart of our new Academic Health
Sciences Center here at Lake Nona that as the Dean said,
we launched last summer. The Academic Health Sciences
Center brings together all of UCF’s strengths in the
health-related academic programs, research, clinical, and
community partnerships. And a great example of
this already taking place is the Lake Nona Cancer Center next door which will house cancer
research, clinical trials, and patient treatment all in one facility. And that’s because we know
that the best ideas always come at the intersection of disciplines, where we anchor education with new and growing emerging industries, cutting edge research, and
the needs of this community. And the most impactful outcomes come when we do work together to empower others’ intellectual curiosity and passion to make a
difference in their future. So in closing, I’d like
to ask for a show of hands of the faculty members, the researchers, the aspiring scientists, doctors, nurses, and other clinicians that are here today. Could you please raise your hands? And many of you are wearing white coats. (audience applauds) This is about you and this is for you and we are so excited for your future. And to all of our friends
and our community supporters, thank you for your partnership. Thank you for your
long-standing commitment to this critical piece of our new Academic Health Sciences Center that will add to Orlando’s growing world-class life sciences
research treatment and teaching. And as we like to say, go Knights. – [All] Charge on. (audience applauds) – Thank you, Dale. Okay. As senior managing director
of the Tavistock group, Rasesh Thakkar has been with
us every step of the way. Everyone knows Rasesh. He has been such a part
of all of our efforts that he may be ready for his
own MD degree after this. Rasesh. – Thank you. – [Woman] You’re welcome. (audience applauds) (clears throat) – Another Field of Dreams, yeah? The call nobody wants. You’re at the office, middle of the day, and your phone rings. Unusual time for a call
from your spouse or child. Honey, what’s up? Everything’s okay, can you talk? Now we all know if your wife starts a call with everything’s okay,
something’s not okay, right? I’m still at the doctor’s office and I need you to come
here now if you can. You immediately remember where she is and why she’s there. And although everything seemed routine, you now have this sick
feeling that it’s not. If any of you have had a call like this, you know what I mean when I
say nothing is as important as your loved one’s health. When Joe Lewis inspired
us at Team Tavistock, we envisioned how Lake Nona
was going to fulfill our dreams of creating the ideal place. The health care of our
families always dominated our aspirations. We knew that achieving
the healthiest community for our families meant that
if you did get that call, you knew you were living
in the right place. The greatest life signs
clusters in the country have taken generations to build, but here we’re really impatient, right? With today’s groundbreaking
now set into motion is completing the final piece of the Medical City health
care delivery puzzle. Let’s start with the renowned
Nemours Children’s Hospital. Nemours has built the beacon
in children’s health care for this century. Thank you, Danna Bledsoe. (audience applauds) Next we have the nation’s
most state-of-the-art hospital for our veterans, already the
third largest in the country and it houses the nation’s
most innovative national center in medical simulation and training. Tim Liezert, I’m sure the 325,000 veterans that have served our country and that call this facility
home view you as a hero. (audience applauds) And at the center of it all, UCF. Arguably the nation’s largest university but unarguably the national champions. (audience applauds) Shepherding one of the newest and most cutting-edge
medical schools in the world and now partnering with the nation’s largest
adult hospital system, HCA. Dr. Hitt. Dr. Hitt, I love you. (audience laughs) The first time I told him this years ago, he got a little uncomfortable maybe. But President Whittaker,
Chairman Marcos Marchena, and Dean German, and your
entire team, so inspirational. Thank you. (audience applauds) It’s these types of giant
collaborative partnerships that exponentially
expand our possibilities. With HCA committing their
resources to Medical City, our healthcare delivery
system is now complete. But that’s not the best part. You see, great health
care partnerships exist in many places around the
country but can you name one that was planned from the beginning to exist alongside a human living lab, where over 70% of the
residents have agreed to share their medical records as part of a multi-generational
health behavior study for the benefit of mankind? Johnson and Johnson describes us as being a community of citizen scientists and have stated that this level of participation doesn’t
exist anywhere in the country. Overlay that against a community plan where not just the medical buildings but every building,
every house, every park, every public space is designed to lead to healthier choices
and healthier lifestyles. We all think differently
here at Lake Nona. Think about this. The leaders of our anchor
hospitals here are so invested in our mission statement,
in your family’s health, that they are announcing
their objective here is to keep you out of their hospitals. That is a real ecosystem
of wellness and prevention. That is the future of medicine. Lake Nona’s mission statement
is to create the ideal place that inspires human potential, all through innovative collaboration. And I don’t know what
could be more inspiring than having these massive
renowned health care innovators come together, bending and
blending their missions with ours and yours for the common goal of creating America’s
healthiest community. Friends, look around
the room or the field. So many of you have been
here since the beginning. What we have all accomplished in such a short period of time and it’s making us grow older, no doubt, but isn’t it also making us grow bolder? Having HCA in Lake Nona together with UCF, building the adult teaching
hospital of the future, makes me hopeful that maybe,
just maybe in my lifetime, I won’t ever have to take that call. From Joe Lewis, Jim Zboril, and our entire team at
Tavistock, congratulations. And to Michael Joyce, Wendy Brandon, and our new friends
from HCA, welcome home. (audience applauds) – Thank you. Okay. At UCF, we dream big and we encourage our students
to reach for the stars. Our biggest, most powerful dreams are those we have in our youth and I am privileged to
bear witness to the dreams of our students every day. We’ve asked Kevin Petersen, student council president
for the class of 2021, to speak about what the UCF
Lake Nona Medical Center means to our future physician Knights. Kevin? (audience applauds) – Thank you, Dean German. Good morning. I’m extremely honored to be here today, representing the diverse student body here at the UCF College of Medicine. A group of passionate, intelligent, and determined scholars
from across the country. On interview day, each
applicant is asked why UCF? And like many of my peers, I replied that I wanted
to help shape the future of the College of Medicine, to be a part of the legacy
that is becoming Medical City. Today all of us are
witnessing the groundbreaking of the catalyst that will allow
us to realize this vision. Over the past year and a half, I’ve had the distinguished privilege of truly getting to know my colleagues on an individual level. Each and every day I’m
inspired by the experiences, talents, and aspirations of
all those that are around me. From what I’ve seen already, I know that the students at
this university will innovate and shape the future of medicine. The HDA UCF partnership
has already created residency opportunities across Florida. However this new hospital
provides an anchor for us, a place that we can call home, an institution where
we can impact medicine from right here in the
heart of Medical City. At UCF, the faculty go
far beyond teaching us the science of medicine. They emphasize the importance
of caring for our communities. The people right here in
Lake Nona have welcomed us as students with open arms, from the local baristas who
have learned our orders by heart and have written those
extra words of encouragement on our cups of coffee to
the standardized patients who have taught us how to become competent and compassionate physicians. The UCF Lake Nona Medical
Center will allow us to give back to and serve the community that has embraced us so
warmly over the past years. In preparation for today, I
ask my colleagues one question. As students, what does the new UCF Lake Nona
Medical Center mean to you? Progress, innovation, and
opportunity were at the heart of each student’s response
but there was one thing that I kept hearing over and over again from students across all four classes. And that was that this hospital symbolizes that no dream is too big to achieve. You see, from day one, Dean
German shared her vision of UCF becoming one of the nation’s premier
medical schools with us. We share that dream and witnessing her dream
becoming reality firsthand has demonstrated that
true passion is the key to achieving our own dreams. Our medical school has
already accomplished so much in such a short time. This partnership with HCA and the creation of the new hospital was
the essential piece needed to actualize the vision of Medical City. Today we are one step closer to creating a healthier tomorrow together. Thank you. (audience applauds) There is actually one more thing. I was extremely inspired
by the survey results that I sent out to my class asking what this hospital will mean to them. I took some of them, the quotes, and I framed them around the
picture of the new hospital. Dr. German, this is for you, to thank you for believing in your dream and for believing in us and also to remind you
about the inspiration that you provide all of us
students on a daily basis that keeps us motivated towards
achieving our own dreams. Thank you so much. (audience applauds) – I think I need to
share this with Michael. (audience applauds) Wow. Well, I think we may have
saved the best for last. The selection of the first hospital CEO by our joint venture board
was deliberate and careful. We wanted an experienced leader, someone who had led a large hospital but had also built a
hospital from the ground up. It’s hard to find those
two things in one person. We also wanted a leader
who shared our passion for academic medicine, a leader who is dedicated to the community and improving the health of all. Wendy Brandon is that leader. She led Central Florida
Regional Hospital in Sanford for the past 10 years. She launched Central Florida Regional’s
level two trauma center, operated the region’s first free-standing emergency department,
and led the development of the new Oviedo Medical Center. She has a passion for medicine and a keen interest in academic medicine. I am privileged to
introduce Wendy Brandon, CEO of the UCF Lake Nona Medical Center. Wendy? (audience applauds) – Ah, what a great day. It is such a privilege
to stand before you today as the first leader of UCF
Lake Nona Medical Center. I have the honor of building
and leading the team who will create a legacy
of quality, compassion, and discovery at UCF
Lake Nona Medical Center. Our hospital will be a place that not only provides
healing for our patients but also educates the health
care providers of the future and supports the work
of brilliant researchers that will lead to life-saving care. I would like to express
my sincere gratitude to our founding directors of the HCA and UCF partnership board who have placed their
trust and confidence in me to lead UCF Lake Nona Medical Center. You’ve already met two of
our board members today. They’re on stage with me. Dr. German and Michael Joyce. I would also like to introduce
our other board members who are here today, so please
stand as I introduce you. Jeanette Schreiber, who
is the chief legal officer for the College of Medicine. (audience applauds) Yes, there’s Jeanette. Joe Conte, trustee for the
University of Central Florida. (audience applauds) Ricardo Pavone, chief financial officer of HCA’s North Florida Division. (audience applauds) Dr. Ray Morales, chief medical officer of HCA’s North Florida division. (audience applauds) And Mickey Grindstaff, former chair of the UCF trustee board, who sends his regrets that he
could not be with us today. Thank you all. I look forward to our
collaboration and successes as we build and grow
our new Medical Center. For the last year leading up to today, many experts have contributed
their energy and talent to help us vision, design,
develop, and gain approvals to begin the construction of
UCF Lake Nona Medical Center. Thank you to all of you who are here today who have been instrumental
to this important foundation. If you were involved in this work, would you please stand now
so we can recognize you? Come on, you’re being shy. There are many of you out there. (audience applauds) We appreciate all of your
efforts to create the campus that will soon be a
vibrant part of Lake Nona. I would also like to
express my gratitude to HCA. For the last 24 years,
I’ve had the opportunity to learn from and collaborate
with the very best in the health care industry. I have worked with some amazing
experts in their fields, many of whom are here today to celebrate this great occasion with us. Thank you to all of my colleagues at HCA who have helped bring us to this day. One of HCA’s founders,
Dr. Thomas Frist Senior once said good people beget good people. I am blessed to have been surrounded by so many good people
throughout my career at HCA who share our mission above all else. We are committed to the care
and improvement of human life. As the board of directors
created our mission for the new hospital, we
expanded upon HCA’s mission and included the life-changing
work of our partners at the College of Medicine. Our partnership’s mission will guide UCF Lake Nona Medical Center in every decision we make and will advance healthcare
for future generations. Our mission is above all else, we are committed to the care
and improvement of human life. We achieve this through the delivery of exceptional patient care, groundbreaking research,
and outstanding education. Thanks to HCA’s dedication
to the broader mission of UCF Lake Nona Medical Center, I have a very exciting announcement to share with all of you today. I know we’re already sharing great news of a new Medical Center but in addition to that, HCA is donating $3 million to the University of Central
Florida College of Medicine, where we will establish the HCA Endowed Eminence
Scholar Chair in Oncology, providing funding for UCF to hire a nationally
recognized academic expert in cancer research. (audience applauds) Thank you, Michael. I am especially honored to be
able to make this announcement on behalf of HCA because I’ve been personally touched by cancer’s devastating
effects on the people I love. I’m certain many of you have
had a similar experience. HCA is committed to advancing
innovative cancer research and supporting the people
who find the cures. With our gift, our partners
at UCF College of Medicine will have resources to hire
a renowned cancer scientist to lead UCF’s efforts in cancer research, ultimately impacting the
lives of our patients in our community and around the world. So now it’s time to take the first step that will lead to the creation of a beautiful high-tech hospital where we will help researchers find cures, where we will launch the careers
of future medical experts, and most importantly, where we will provide hope and healing for the Lake Nona
community and far beyond. I would like to invite
today’s ceremonies speakers, the partnership board of
directors, and Marcos Marchena to join me with a shovel and hard hat for our first groundbreaking photo. After this photo, we will
invite other groups by name for a photo as well, so please listen for
your group to be called. On behalf of HCA, the
UCF College of Medicine, and the UCF Lake Nona Medical Center, thank you so much for being
here to celebrate with us today. (audience applauds) (mumbling) (applauds) – [Man] At this time, we would
like to invite HCA leadership and the UCF Board of Trustees
to come up for picture. Again, at this time we would
like to invite HCA leadership and the UCF Board of Trustee members to come up for a picture. – [Man] That’ll be better, sorry, sorry. Hey, can you get… Can you get camera three to turn around? Alright, let me see if I can spin it. I mean, four, can you
get four to turn around? – [Man] We would like to
welcome other elected officials to come up to take a picture. Once again, other elected officials, please come up to take your picture. At this time, we would
like Medical City partners to please come up and take your picture. Once again, Medical City partners, please come up to take your picture. This next picture is for
Medical City partners, please. Okay, please if you’re part
of the design, development, and construction partners, please come up and take your picture.

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